I think that Saturday mornings are a good time to ponder before gearing up and doing what you need to do for the day. On this particular Saturday morning, my thoughts turned to electronic view finders, or EVFs. I’ve had a couple of experiences with them. One, I wrote about a little more than 2 years ago, about my first experience, the Minolta DiMage A1. I didn’t like the EVF experience. I wanted glass. It was slow to refresh, lots of smearing, and nearly impossible to focus manually, if you wanted to. The next visit was with the Nikon P-510. Now, the EVF was better, though certainly no substitute for glass. Nikon’s offering in the P-510 was stingy at best. It was a pretty small viewfinder, usable, but no replacement for glass. The camera that I rented, and wrote about, the Nikon V1 had a pretty good EVF. It was hard to make it smear because the refresh was so good. Obviously, they took the cheaper route and put a lesser EVF into the P-510, even though it came out after the V1, but, in all fairness, the P-510 was a cheaper, non-interchangeble lens camera.
So, here it is two years later, now I’m using Olympus cameras and, I must say that the EVF is so good that sometimes I really do forget that I’m not using glass! The thing that keeps me understanding that I’m using an EVF is all of the information displayed, which thankfully, I can reduce the amount of info shown.
The big advantage that I can ‘see’ is how things will look if I change white balance, or exposure. One step back, if I wanted to see that with a glass viewfinder, I’d have to take a picture, then look at the back, make an adjustment, etc. One step back from that, I’d have to bracket a bit, then find out what it looked like after the film was developed. Forget about white balance because in the film days, well, film was balanced for a certain type of light source. If you should tungsten film in daylight, you’d get a serious case of the ‘blues’. If you shot daylight film under florescent light, either green or purple were your colors of the day. As a matter of fact, this photo reminds me of how it might have looked had I used tungsten film under proper lighting with a little bit of window light coming through, a bit of warm and a bit of cool.
Another advantage that when the light is getting dim in the room, the EVF magnifies the available light, but seems to keep the values the same, relative to each other. This works for my ‘older’ eyes. Every little bit helps.
Technological advances are great. I’m enjoying them and EVF is one of the things that I’ve embraced, wholeheartedly.